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Politics Sat, 17 Jul 2010

Women in Dormaa target 2010 for action

Dormaa Ahenkro (B/A) July 17, GNA - A group of women attending a leadership training workshop at Dormaa Ahenkro have indicated the readiness of women in the two Dormaa districts to actively participate in the forthcoming district level elections.

They, therefore, appealed to their respective assemblies, traditional authorities, NGOs, identifiable groups, the youth and other women for the needed support during the build-up to the elections.

The participants included queen mothers, select prominent women from both districts and assembly members from the two assemblies.

The forum was jointly organised by ACTIONAID Ghana and the Dormaa Traditional Healers and Birth Attendants Association, a Dormaa based NGO.

It was aimed at enhancing the confidence of women in the two districts to actively participate in the decision-making process at the local level.

Topics treated included, "Legality of women's participation in governance," "Fundamental Rights of Women" and "International Laws regulating the Rights of Women and the Vulnerable in Society."

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Opening the workshop, Vincent Oppong Asamoah, Dormaa Municipal Chief Executive, acknowledged the positive contributions of women in the national developmental process since independence, saying they needed to be given adequate representation at all levels in decision making.

"Men have been at the forefront of decision-making in the country for more than 50 years and I have the conviction that it is time for women to also share in, if not assume total control of the country for us to see how far they can take us," he said.

Taking the participants through "Civil and Political Rights of Women," Freeman Ndor, Dormaa Municipal Director of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice, (CHRAJ) said Ghana's 1992 Constitution as well as many national and international treaties and conventions provided women with the rights and protection to vote and be voted for.

He noted that society in its bid to perpetuate unacceptable customary practices to further dissuade women from occupying respectable positions, usually tended to attack the morals of aspiring female politicians rather than facing the real issues of the contest.

Mr. Ndor described as unacceptable the Ghanaian habit of capitalizing on women's non-marriage and barrenness as the basis for judging their civic and political capabilities, adding, women possessed numerous other qualities that must be taken into account.

Mr John Aba, an ACTIONAID programme officer, took the participants through basic challenges confronting women in their fight for gender balance, including obsolete customs and traditional practices that rendered women perpetually subservient to men.

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He defined who a leader was, what constituted leadership qualities and how women could uplift their confidence status and assume leadership roles at all levels of society.

Nana Brafo Ababio, 53, the only male participant and a second year Junior High School pupil, appealed to women to encourage their girls to be serious with their education to enhance their leadership qualities.

Mahama Salaam, programme director of DOTHEBAA, deplored the abysmal representation of women in the past two district assembly elections in the Dormaa districts and proposed that the rank and file of the two districts must for once dedicate their votes to the cause of women this year.

He announced that as part of his organization's support for prospective female assembly women this year, it had begun mobilizing interested females to be trained in how to market themselves for the assembly elections in October.

Source: GNA